Hmmmmm…………..where do I even begin…………..?
As I mentioned earlier, I’m “cursed” with having a very sharp mind, and high intellect. I’ve known this since I was little.
Growing up, being wayyyy smarter than those around me earned me more enemies than friends. As a little boy, I hated this fact. As I grew older, I shed that burden of worry, and instead embraced my uniqueness. I even welcomed the fact that I was disliked for being intelligent. For one thing, it made my life easier. I don’t suffer fools gladly; and, I’ve always had a zero tolerance for stupidity. Thus, by embracing who I was, I was spared the necessity of having to put up with them.
This isn’t to say that they went away quietly. Ohhhhhhh, no; as anyone with half a brain knows: “fools are ever-so-engrossed in their own right-of-way, that they fail to notice when they are simply not wanted around!”
(My quote, incidentally)
Anyway, my life has always been governed by three very, very simple philosophies (all other philosophies I adhere to, tend to stem from these three):
1. Don’t tell me what you THINK; tell me what you KNOW!
The great Roman emperor, Marcus Aurelius, once said : “Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”
There are very, very few things which annoy me as much as when people state “opinions”. The general consensus among the masses is that everyone has their own opinion. This is true. Nothing wrong with having an opinion…………so long as you can keep it to yourself!
The problem with most people is their inherent belief that:
(a) their opinion is the only one that matters; and/or……
(b) their opinion is the truth/fact; and/or……….
(c) having an opinion means one is automatically obligated to SHARE that opinion with the rest of the world!
I could go on and on about stupidity, mediocrity and ignorance. But, that’s beside the main issue here. The main issue is: most people are simply incapable, not only of even acknowledging that: opinions do NOT change facts, but of even distinguishing said opinion from said fact.
All too often I hear people say: “Well, that’s just MY opinion!” Well, yes, of course it’s YOUR opinion; after all, it came spewing out of YOUR mouth. Sometimes I have to bite my tongue to keep from pointing out what would be obvious to any remotely intelligent individual: “just because it came out of your mouth, does not make it true.”
Have you ever been to a bazaar? Ever seen a trader arguing with a buyer?
“How much for these oranges?”
“What? That’s too expensive!” — (…..in my opinion…….)
“No, it’s not! These are the best oranges in town!” — (….in my opinion…….)
“These oranges are not the best. Not worth 2 dollars!” — (…..in my opinion…….)
And so on, and so forth…………..over and over. This is how I view opinions, and the people who voice them — useless, pointless, irrelevant.
Opinions are as useless and irrelevant as those people who insist on voicing them. Anything not based on FACT is useless and irrelevant. If you want to have a conversation with me, please use facts. I’m not interested in opinions — yours, or anyone else’s. I’m not interested in what you “think”; I can think for myself. I’m only interested in what you “know” to be true, for a fact.
If you don’t have the facts, then do what any intelligent person would do: shut up, until you have your facts straight.
If I want an “opinion”, I’ll go to the bazaar.
“Well, that’s just my two cents”, you say? Well, here’s what I think about your two cents:
“There are in fact two things, science and opinion; the former begets knowledge, the latter ignorance.”
“The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd; indeed in view of the silliness of the majority of mankind, a widely spread belief is more likely to be foolish than sensible.”
— Bertrand Russel
“The opinions that are held with passion are always those for which no good ground exists; indeed the passion is the measure of the holders lack of rational conviction. Opinions in politics and religion are almost always held passionately.”
— Bertrand Russel
“Every man has a right to his own opinion, but no man has a right to be wrong in his facts”
— Bernard M. Baruch
2. K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Stupid!)
This phrase is very popular. It’s meaning needs no elaboration. Or, rather, one would think so; unfortunately, I have found myself having to sometimes spell this out for the ignorant.
Incidentally, KISS was first coined by an aircraft engineer named Kelly Johnson, who was lead engineer at the US Lockheed Skunk Works (creators of the Lockheed U-2 and SR-71 Blackbird spy planes, among many others). He coined the term as a principle that: most systems work best if they are kept simple rather than made complicated; therefore, simplicity should be a key goal in design, and unnecessary complexity should be avoided.
Since then, of course, KISS has been applied to many other facets of life, including: business economics, software engineering, etc.
“Keep it simple”, I would say. This has been the case in both my personal and professional life. “Life is complicated enough as it is”, I would add. “Why make it more complicated??!”
3. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!!!
Oh, dear, oh, dear, oh, dear!!!
How many times have I found myself mumbling these words to some Einstein-wannabee, who suddenly decided to prove his “genius” — or lack there of — by poking around in, and trying to “fix”, a system which was not broken to begin with.
Nobody is sure exactly where this phrase originated. But, it’s popularity has been credited to a man named Thomas Bertram Lance. Lance was an American businessman, who served as Director of the Office of Management and Budget, under President Jimmy Carter, in 1977. In May of that year, he quoted the phrase: “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it“, in the magazine “Nation’s Business”.
Lance explained it like this: “That’s the trouble with government: Fixing things that aren’t broken and not fixing things that are broken!”
The expression became widespread, and William Safire wrote that it “has become a source of inspiration to anti-activists.”
Activists or not, here’s my explanation: If something is working adequately well, leave it alone!!! Yeah, I love the phrase. What I don’t love is having to repeat it to bumbling clowns who — true to their nature — have an irresistible urge to tinker with anything and everything.
“For Pete’s sake, just LEAVE IT ALONE!”…………..I sometimes feel like snapping. Especially, at work. (Thankfully, I now work remotely, from home. So, I no longer have to work alongside such “great minds”).